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Using the Imperial War Museum reading room

I wish to use the reading room at the IWM to inspect and take notes on some holdings. Can anybody offer practical tips on:
- getting to the IWM from the west end,
- making arrangements ahead of time,
- what notetaking materials I can take into the reading room and;
- other attractions in that area of London.

Posted by
571 posts

"Access to our documents, sound archive, published items, digital resources and War Artists Archive is available in our Research Room at IWM London. We are open 10am – 5pm Monday – Friday. Appointments are recommended and can be made by emailing [email protected] or by phoning +44(0) 20 7416 5342. When requesting an appointment three working days notice is required."

"IWM London is only a 20-minute bus ride from Churchill War Rooms or HMS Belfast. It's also close to a wide-range of famous tourist attractions including Tate Britain, Tate Modern, Westminster Abbey and the London Eye."

Both of these, from:

As best I can tell from the website, you would enter the museum from the same place as other visitors to it. But that, and what materials you can carry into the archive, would be better answered by writing to the same address above listed to make your reservation.
Have a productive research trip!

Posted by
419 posts

When we were in London a few years ago, we just phoned the Museum and told them what we were interested in.
They set up an appointment for that afternoon and had all the material on the desk when we arrived.
Everyone was most helpful and courteous. A memorable experience.

Posted by
9110 posts

Where you're leaving from in West End would matter - - once you're on the south side of Westminster Bridge it's only about a ten-minute walk.

Call ahead, they're neat people.

You can take in about what you want. They'll probably snoop in your satchel on the way out.

Posted by
2081 posts


i would hope you spend some time in the museum itself. They have a really nice one.

Happy trails.

Posted by
14580 posts


Coming from the west end on the Tube, you need to transfer to reach Lambeth North, the nearst station to the IWM. From Lambeth North just follow the signs to the IWM, ca 8-10 mins walk until you see the naval guns (13" ?) out in front of the museum.